Every remodeling contract should include the following:

> contractor information, including name, address, telephone numbers, license and insurance policy numbers;

> what the contractor will and will not do (what they will not do can be as important as what they will do);

> all materials, including size, colors, specifications, manufacturer and model number;

> a dated copy of all drawings and diagrams; start and finish dates;

> work start and finish times, as well as the days of the week workers will be at your home;

> how changes (change orders) will be handled;

> a one-year warranty;

> a binding arbitration clause;

> a statement of how the contract can be cancelled;

> a statement that the contractor will provide affidavits of final release, final payment or final lien waver from all subcontractors and suppliers.

Other important items and clauses in a contract include the following:

>> an assignment clause (preventing the contractor from transferring the job to another contractor without your permission);

>> a capacity/independent contractor clause (establishing that the contractor is not an employee of the homeowner);

>> an entire agreement clause (that all the terms to be considered have been included in the contract);

>> a note of the laws for the state that will be applicable for the agreement;

>> clauses about legal expenses, return of property, notice and arbitration of disputes;

>> statement of the validity of the agreement; and

>> a statement of payment terms and times.